Attested: (1) Ptolemy 2,3,1 Ουινδογαρα κολπος (or Ουιδογαρα or Ουιδοταρα)
(2) Ptolemy 2,3,9 Ουανδογαρα (Ουανδουαρα) a πολις of the Δαμνονιοι
Where: (1) was Irvine Bay. Marx (2013) identified (2) with Ayr, but Ptolemy's πολις was probably the native power centre known as Kemp Law, inland from Troon, at NS355336 near Dundonald, where there was later a castle.
Name Origin: See Vindo- ‘pleasant’. The –gara part was a precursor of gore, a common element in later place names, meaning ‘promontory’, derived from words for ‘spear’, whose PIE root
*ghaiso- led to Irish gae but developed most strongly in Germanic languages. Assuming that Ουινδογαρα was the correct spelling for both names, there was presumably a ‘fair cape’, for which Troon is a strong candidate, that was a welcome sight to sailors and gave a name to the whole κολπος ‘bay’.
Notes: Possible parallels in Celtic languages found by Breeze mean ‘leg’. A little way north up the coast, Maromago was probably a Roman fort, long suspected to exist at Irvine, while Itucodon was probably an unidentified Roman fort further south, perhaps at Ayr.
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Last edited:13 October 2018